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  Autographica 19, Birmingham, UK, September 2013 (Page 4)

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Author Topic:   Autographica 19, Birmingham, UK, September 2013
Apollo14LMP
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posted 09-22-2013 04:58 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Apollo14LMP   Click Here to Email Apollo14LMP     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I agree with the comments made in the earlier post in regard to the show being nothing more than a handing over of cash event.

£40.00 for a two-second photo and £100 per autograph is just too much. But when you are rushed and pushed by people who would be better placed on a nightclub door, well I have to agree no more Autographica for this family.

I did consider going we could have paid for a £100 autograph but charging £40.00 for EACH person for a photo is ridiculous! Two girls and me? £120.00?

Neil Armstrong didn't even charge to have his photograph taken with his fans! He actually said he favoured a photograph opportunity to autographs anyway (Dublin, 2003). I found meeting him the ultimate experience, not surpassed. Buzz Aldrin was very amenable too (Dublin, 2004) — free autograph and photo!

Whilst I understand the commercial nature of these events and the opportunity they offer, it is clearly the choice of people to do what they want as consumers.

Others will argue otherwise in coming posts — but sadly this is one family who will not be going to meet the Last Man on the Moon.

ApolloAlex
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posted 09-22-2013 05:10 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for ApolloAlex   Click Here to Email ApolloAlex     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
What an incredible weekend. I must admit I did think that getting to chat to Walt, Rusty or Gene on the Friday drinks evening was going to be a bit difficult but I managed to get a chat with Walt Cunningham, who introduced my daughter and I to his wife Dot who was a lovely lady. Walt and I spoke for a good few minutes on various matters including his flight and the weather back in Texas. And he was by far more then happy to pose for a quick photo.

Rusty Schweickart had by then gone to dinner and so my daughter and I worked our way to Gene Cernan, who was just chatting to one group of people and was posing for pics before he too went off to dinner. I can only thank Mr. Cernan for quickly posing for a picture as he didn't have to, but nevertheless it certainly made our day.

The Saturday got off to a great start. My copy of "All American Boys" was signed by Walt, who recognised me from the previous evening and kindly asked how we were, I then had to return to my car to fetch my Revell Command and Service module for Walt and Rusty. As I approached Walt's table I was greeted with "You again," to which he graciously signed the service module section of my module. Rusty Schweickart also did the same and kindly posed with it.

I must also add it was great to meet my good friend Mike from Swansea again. I must also say how much it good to see Dave Bryant and his good lady wife again. I can never resist but come away with something from his superb flash of items. It was also a great pleasure to meet Martin Biddulph, Carl Walker and of course Chris (Tykeanaut) and his good lady.

All in all a great experience.

gliderpilotuk
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posted 09-22-2013 07:36 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Apollo14LMP:
Others will argue otherwise in coming posts — but sadly this is one family who will not be going to meet the Last Man on the Moon.
I agree that the photo pricing was crazy but I'm sure he still had a long line. I wouldn't pay £40 for a photo let alone £120! However, who dictates and who gets what out of this fee is anyone's guess. Having spoken at length on Saturday with Garry King it is very clear that the organisers are not the ones that clean up at these shows (probably an obvious statement!).

The conversation that Walt engaged in when I "only" had his book to sign, was captivating — a history of the writing and comparisons with the tone of Mike Mullane's book. Contrast that with getting eight items signed by someone else, with hardly a word exchanged. I wouldn't blame the show guests, or the organisers. As much as anything, many of the "money-collectors" and desk assistants create the "give us your money/now move on" atmosphere.

It's still a great event, well-organised and a fine opportunity to catch up with friends. This really makes the show for me. And occasionally you pick up something nice from the dealers. (Thanks for the fine Schmitt signed print Garry!)

Tykeanaut
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posted 09-22-2013 07:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tykeanaut   Click Here to Email Tykeanaut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Although as I've already posted I did enjoy the day, I do agree that the minders give it a bad vibe. It was also disappointing that a hand-shake photo with Rusty Schweickart following my signing was not allowed.

I think some of these annoyances may have to be addressed before it affects attendances perhaps?

Paul23
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posted 09-22-2013 08:16 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul23   Click Here to Email Paul23     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
From statements made in the past, Showmasters have generally suggested the most they ever hope to do after each Autographica is to break even, they have no expectation of making a profit from the show. I can remember overhearing a conversation a few years ago at the show (just to be clear the conversation did not include any of the show organisers, I understood one of the parties knew someone who had either organised or attempted to organise their own event so this was no one from Autographica talking out of school) and to hear the price that one astronaut had quoted to attend a weekend event in the UK frankly made my hair curl!

I guess we all come to these shows with different wants and expectations based on our own past experiences. I was a relative latecomer in that I didn't start collecting till about 2007 so perhaps didn't attend the shows when some have said that more interaction was possible. I'll be honest and say I am someone who gets quite easily tongue tied around people so don't usually engage in too many conversations but I found there was enough time to chat with Walt Cunningham and Rusty Schweikert. Gene Cernan less so but he had a lengthy queue at the that stage so that wasn't a big surprise.

On the pricing, I can understand the disappointment when a family photo could end up costing something like £120, but if they start opening it up to unrestricted numbers per ticket I could see it being abused in all sorts of ways. As for the autograph prices, I thought the base fees were very reasonable (by astronaut standards) this time round. Interestingly I have just looked at the photos one of the guests signed for me yesterday and have noted that the crew position was added on at no extra cost, this wasn't because I had asked for something at the signing desk that I hadn't paid for at the cash desk so I don't know if charging extra for crew positions was an official policy or I just to lucky in this case.

I'll avoid commenting on the merits of Autographica and Pontefract as I've never been to one of the Pontesfract events so have no point of comparison. From what I understand though the two events are set up along slightly different lines so maybe no great surprise there are differences between the two. All I would say though is there will be a time, probably not a billion years away, when we won't be getting any more Apollo astronauts visiting the UK, seems a shame not to make the most of it while we can.

Just to be clear I am not looking to pick an argument with anyone, we all have our own thoughts on things, I just wanted to share my opinions and experiences of what was, for me, a fantastic day and I am very much looking forward o the next one.

Apollo14LMP
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posted 09-22-2013 08:45 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Apollo14LMP   Click Here to Email Apollo14LMP     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Good points made. I know Autographica don't profit, I have spoken to Garry in the past. But someone is profitting. Al Worden a few years ago was £10.00 for the photoshoot! Realise prices rise and profits need to be made but £120.00 they could offer a family photo, no more than 5 people say, that seems fair. I don't mind paying a "price" but £120 for three seems very excessive!

Would have paid it for Armstrong and only Armstrong, in fact paid 400 Euros to meet him but no one else is worth that money sorry.

Unobtrusive security is a must.

robsouth
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posted 09-22-2013 08:54 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for robsouth     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I didn't have a problem with the cost of the autographs, I thought they were reasonable. The £5 for the crew position was annoying, just bump the cost of the autograph up by a fiver and include it in the cost. Its always been included in the last 13 years that I've attended.

Make your money, thats only fair and people always have a choice to pay or not, just don't forget that a lot of time, effort and money has taken to get someone to the signing table, let them enjoy that all to brief moment when they are there.

I would like to add Fred Haise to my list of great guests, had a good chat to him, he signed my photo and he posed for a pic with me, class act!

Tykeanaut
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posted 09-22-2013 12:02 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tykeanaut   Click Here to Email Tykeanaut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Hey Rob, where did you find Fred Haise this weekend?

Ade74
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posted 09-22-2013 01:25 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Ade74   Click Here to Email Ade74     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Highlights for me today were the lectures... a very surprising turn in Terry Pappas's lecture when he got emotional (and had to stop speaking) when describing a tough mission and his returning back to the 200 manned hangar. Made it all the more real what these guys do and how much it means to them.

...and then there was captain Cernan's lecture. I would have paid £100 to listen to his enthusiasm, commitment and passion. Was such a shame he had to stop after only 1 1/2 hours.

I did miss two photo shoots due to lectures and event timings but I'll take that (but will probably give photo shoots a miss next time).

robsouth
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posted 09-22-2013 01:32 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for robsouth     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Tykeanaut:
Hey Rob, where did you find Fred Haise this weekend?
Fred Haise obviously attended a previous show.

To compare how the experience used to be, I remember meeting Ed Mitchell years ago and we were chatting as he signed and posed for photos. One of the guys in the queue walked forward and put his photo to be signed on the table and Ed said something along the lines of, 'One moment please, we haven't quite finished here yet'. Ah the good old days. Compare that to yesterday when I had my photos quickly scrambled out of my bag and on the table while the guy in front was having his item signed and the guy behind was being coaxed to have his item ready. Maybe I'm asking too much for my £400 pounds that I spent yesterday.

Scott Carpenter would also make my top guest list, and before you ask, no he wasn't there yesterday either!

Kite
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posted 09-22-2013 04:16 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Kite     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I had brilliant day at Autographica this Sunday. Went to all four lectures and all very good in their own unique styles.

Terry Pappas gave a very personal talk, which has already been commented on, and it was none the worse for that. Very sincere and speaking to him later showed what a great guy he is, giving me his card so I can obtain his book on the SR71 Blackbird.

Walt Cunningham gave an interesting talk and was very honest in his answer to my question of what it was like working with Wally Schirra and said what a joker he was, full of puns.

Rusty Schweikart gave a heavier type of talk on the universe and how we relate to it and really only spoke of Apollo 9 when questioned on it but replied very thoroughly. A good thought provoking lecture.

Which brings me to Gene Cernan. I can only endorse what Ade76 posted. His enthusiasm, commitment and passion are a great description of his talk and I think everybody there appreciated it. He gave a glowing and sincere tribute to Neil Armstrong and was so honest with his long and thorough answers to some very interesting questions. I have always hoped I would meet him and was not disappointed, on the contrary, he was brilliant.

Also good to meet up with some of the usual cS members and friends from Pontefract. A super day so thanks to all concerned at Autographica for making it possible.

David Bryant
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posted 09-22-2013 06:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for David Bryant   Click Here to Email David Bryant     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well I can only think some of the above posters were at a different show!

The weekend was, as always, well-organised, with terrific guests and plenty of opportunity for discussion and interaction.
The lectures were intriguing, revealing and superb value for money!

Well done Jason and Dave and all the team!

Blackarrow
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posted 09-22-2013 06:53 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Blackarrow     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
One of my main motivations for attending was the opportunity to listen once again to Gene Cernan talking about his experiences in NASA and particularly on the Apollo 17 mission.

Near the end of his second talk, on Sunday, I asked him to explain what it meant to him as a former naval aviator to have landed a spacecraft on another world. His answer, spread over about ten minutes, took in the landing itself, but so much more besides. When he came to the moment of touchdown I think a lot of people in the audience realised simultaneously that we had stopped breathing.

How often, particularly in the UK, do we get the chance to listen to a first-hand account of such a momentous event? This was priceless. My life was enriched by Apollo and is further enriched every time I get to hear one of the participants describing what it was all about.

Paul23
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posted 09-23-2013 01:39 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul23   Click Here to Email Paul23     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Reading the comments about the Sunday lectures has made me realise even more what a mistake it was just going for the one day this year. I thought I was being terribly clever by cramming everything into the Saturday but it sounds like the Sunday lectures were even better than Saturdays (not that there was anything wrong with Saturday!)

Weekend ticket already booked for next year and think hotel room will shortly follow!

Rick Mulheirn
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posted 09-23-2013 08:01 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was told by the photographers running the photo shoot that there was a link on the Autographica website forum; in due course it will be possible for £5.00 to download the original image file.

For the life of me I cannot see the link.

Can somebody please point me in the direction of this link and please....feel free to use my white stick!

carl walker
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posted 09-23-2013 08:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for carl walker     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well, people might have had different experiences in the queues, signings or dining tables, but these pale to insignificance compared to Sunday's lectures.

You'll know what I mean if you were at the last talk of Sunday, by Gene Cernan. He ran over by at least 20 minutes. But who cares?

Gene gave one of the best talks I've heard: he spoke about his early days, his father, his colleagues including Neil. Then the room was treated to a near real time recollection of the descent and landing of Apollo 17, by the man who did it. And not just technical detail. What he saw, what he felt.

Kite and Blackarrow said it. You could hear your own heartbeat. Absolutely mesmerising.

Whatever our ages, we were all kids again in that moment, listening to one of our childhood heroes. And I'll bet I was not the only so-called grown-up who had to take a few minutes to recompose themselves at the end before leaving the room.

Outstanding.

Thanks to the Autographica team for organising this.

Rick Mulheirn
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posted 09-23-2013 08:24 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I was in and out of the signing room throughout Saturday and Sunday. Walt and Rusty were busy at times with queues for both, typically of around half a dozen people or so. At other times they were kicking their heels affording them the luxury of time to speak to fans such as myself.

There was a danger that posing for photos at the signing tables would create an expectation that Gene Cernan could/should do likewise.

With all due respect to the other guys, Gene had a queue of people almost the entire weekend. The only thing that varied was its length. People even queued while he was away at the photo shoot or giving his lecture.

Had he posed at the table and chatted at length he would still be signing... 24 hours after the show had ended.

Paul23
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posted 09-23-2013 08:24 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul23   Click Here to Email Paul23     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Rick Mulheirn:
Can somebody please point me in the direction of this link and please...
I think this is the link you are after, don't think the Autographica pictures are up yet but probably will be sooner or later.

Rick Mulheirn
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posted 09-23-2013 08:25 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Thank you!

rgarner
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posted 09-23-2013 09:11 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for rgarner   Click Here to Email rgarner     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I personally had a fantastic time at the event and even got a few autographs of my own from Rusty and Walt, both of whom were absolute gentlemen. That as well having the pleasure of having my stall set up next to Davids, overall it was a lot of fun and the Autographica team did very well hosting the event.

I'm looking forward to March!

utopia1
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posted 09-23-2013 02:32 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for utopia1   Click Here to Email utopia1     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Any news on who else will be attending the March show?

Robert Pearlman
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posted 09-23-2013 03:00 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by utopia1:
Any news on who else will be attending the March show?
We have a topic dedicated to that show: Autographica 20, London, UK, March 2014 and an entry on the Sightings calendar for the guests who have been announced.

robert_l
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posted 09-23-2013 03:09 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for robert_l   Click Here to Email robert_l     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I had a fantastic time, 100% magic.

At the Friday night drinks reception, I chatted with Shane Rimmer (Thunderbirds and Bond films) as we waited to get in! Once in, I got to meet all three astronauts.

The highlight of the whole show was meeting Walt. I talked to him about the Cunningham family, which goes back centuries in Scotland but Walt said he was descended from Ireland.

I talked to Rusty about my Apollo 12 kilt and then talked to Gene and we compared our Speedmaster watches. He has an X-33 and I have the original Apollo type. Of the three, I found him the most friendly.

Then Ken McTaggart introduced me to all three of the astronauts again!

The highlight for me was noticing an empty seat next to Captain Cernan. Then there was just a blur as Aileen zoomed in like a comet to sit next to him! The Saturday lectures were very good.

I knew that Rusty would talk about NEO and I asked him about the need for a space telescope and it turns out that is what he wanted! Gene's talk was very good at times he was in tears with emotion, as I was, to at his description of the moon and god.

The dinner was very good. I was at Terry Papass table, the Blackbird SR-71 (I also talked to him at the drinks reception. We are both big admirers of President Reagan!)

I was also sitting down next to Mr. Rumbold of "Are You Being Served?" We had a fascinating conversation about TV centre and how they made the program.

I was again reduced to tears when Patrick appeared in the slides of those we have lost in the last year.

Sunday it was amazing to hear Walt talk about the space program. I asked Rusty about his EVA as I knew he had an amazing time to look down at the earth. Terry's talk about the SR-71 was amazing, as again was Gene Cernan.

I got Walt and Rusty's autograph but could not afford Gene, but I already have an Apollo 17 photo (but it may be autopen).

Again the best bit is meeting everyone in the bar and talking about Apollo. Thanks to Dave and his team. Autographica is worth every penny!

Skyguy48
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posted 09-23-2013 04:46 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Skyguy48   Click Here to Email Skyguy48     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Blackarrow:
One of my main motivations for attending was the opportunity to listen once again to Gene Cernan talking about his experiences in NASA and particularly on the Apollo 17 mission.
I had dinner with Cernan at the 2011 ASF show and he had our table spellbound, like a master storyteller he had us all in his grip. There was a twist at the end of his story he told... it was all FACT!!

Later the next night in the bar at the Radisson someone took a great natural photo of Cernan and I having a drink. I have that photo on my wall and I see it every night and think, "Yeah, I was really there."

Nigel Mc
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posted 09-24-2013 05:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Nigel Mc   Click Here to Email Nigel Mc     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Had a great time, really calm atmosphere meeting them all and the group photo is already on my wall. Well worth it.

Congrats to all involved!

gliderpilotuk
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posted 09-24-2013 09:56 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for gliderpilotuk   Click Here to Email gliderpilotuk     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Rick Mulheirn:
Had he posed at the table and chatted at length he would still be signing... 24 hours after the show had ended.

That hug is worryingly enthusiastic Rick - and Gene seems to feel it!

AstroAutos
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posted 09-24-2013 03:20 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for AstroAutos   Click Here to Email AstroAutos     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
So my feet are back down to Earth after my 4th Autographica. What a fantastic weekend, everything was as good as expected (and then some) and it won't be forgotten for some time to come.

I brought my girlfriend Demi over for her first show and she loved it (getting some male attention from a couple of astronauts too no less).

We flew over from Dublin (very) early on Saturday morning and looked around the hotel for a bit. I did the Cernan, Cunningham and Schweickart photo-shoots - couldn't afford the group astronaut shot unfortunately.

The hotel was as brilliant as ever and very easily accessible. We got our room key at midday on Saturday and threw some stuff up. There didn't seem to be quite as many dealers there as usual (or maybe it was just the different room which made it look that way).

Over the entire weekend, I only got autographs from Walt Cunningham (Apollo 7 staring at model litho), Rusty Schweickart (WSS litho) and Bond actor Bruce Glover. All personalized to me. I would've bought a Cernan autograph but decided to attend his Sunday lecture instead. What a treat that was - probably the best astronaut talk I have ever heard.

I am currently the Sports Editor and keen Space correspondent for my college newspaper, The University Observer of University College Dublin (UCD). Last year at Autographica I had the pleasure of interviewing Buzz Aldrin, Charlie Duke, Ed Mitchell and Dick Gordon at their signing tables when they weren't busy at the end of the day. They were fantastic experiences which I will never forget, which they were dwarfed by last weekend.

I had been in email contact with Walt Cunningham over the summer and had recently read his book and so was keen for an interview. On Saturday last he duly obliged and sat with me at his signing table for 15 minutes chatting with my recorder in hand. He is an absolute gent and I sincerely hope he comes back over again someday. Myself and Demi chatted with Walt and his lovely wife Dot for a while in the bar on the Sunday evening after things had been wrapped up - what a lovely, down to Earth couple!

On Saturday evening I got an autograph and photo with Bruce Glover (Diamonds Are Forever). An eccentric man but so nice and easy to talk to.

Then came the highlight of the weekend (and one of the highlights of my life, and no, that is not an exaggeration!) With Larry McGlynn helping out his good friend Captain Cernan at the signing table, I was fortunate enough to get 20 minutes alone with Captain Cernan in the photo-shoot room after everything had been cleared out, interviewing him about his life.

We covered many topics from landing on the Moon to his time in the Navy to the current administrations shortcomings to driving on the Moon to his recent FAA article about a runway intrusion he made. It was an absolutely magnificent 20 minutes and was only topped by seeing my good friend Larry McGlynn again. I first met Larry at Autographica when I was 15 (I turned 20 on the Saturday of this Autographica to put that into context.) As he pointed out to Capt. Cernan, he has known me since I wasn't exactly 6'3"

It was lovely to see the regular cSers again like Chris, Craig, David Bryant and others. But that one special mention must go to the one and only Larry McGlynn.

I understand some people's complaints about the money-grabbing nature, however you have the choice to pay or not. Captain Cernan was charging less here than he has been in the States so those who got signatures from him should count themselves lucky. The hike in prices of the lectures from £10 to £20 did force me to have to only go to Gene's lecture as I couldn't afford Walt or Rusty's (although Gene's was certainly worth it.)

Overall a fantastic weekend. Kudos to the Showmasters guys for making it happen - I hope myself and Demi get over to London in March.

As long as the Apollo guys are willing to come over, there will be huge interest in Autographica - here's to the next 19 shows!

AstroAutos
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posted 09-24-2013 03:48 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for AstroAutos   Click Here to Email AstroAutos     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Myself and Walt Cunningham:

The Last Man - not a pin dropped...

Engaged in conversation with Rusty Schweickart:

Myself and Demi with actor Bruce Glover:

AstroAutos
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posted 09-24-2013 03:49 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for AstroAutos   Click Here to Email AstroAutos     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Dot, Demi, Walt and Me...

Interviewing Captain Cernan:

Me and my hero:

Larry, Me and Gene:

Rick Mulheirn
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posted 09-24-2013 05:21 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by gliderpilotuk:
That hug is worryingly enthusiastic Rick - and Gene seems to feel it!
Brammers... Gene Cernan is the astronaut I have been hoping to meet again perhaps more than any other. I was not about to let him get away that easily!

Then again, now that I think about it, Gene was reeling from the re-wire quote the "Sixshooter" had just given him!

For the record, I want to thank Larry McGlynn for all his help over the weekend. He is a good friend and someone I have known for many years; his presence was the icing on the cake.

Buel
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posted 09-25-2013 04:52 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Buel   Click Here to Email Buel     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Well, well, well, what can I add to what has already been written on here? Hmmmmm... probably not much but I'll give it a shot.

What a weekend that was! As has been said, the lectures were really something special, especially Sunday's lectures. It is difficult to put in to words what all of us experienced at Gene Cernan's talk on Sunday, he really sucked us in. He really took us to another place (Yes, I know, the Moon, but I don't mean that) The best way to describe what happened to me was that I was 'gone' at certain points during it. I think the most intense part was when he described the descent to the Moon and used his hands to describe how the LM was leaning back whilst descending (We all knew this but actually seeing him describe this was something to behold.)

Terry Pappas- OMG (as the kids say, Colin)! He walked in as if going for a Sunday afternoon stroll and, in the words of a good friend, spoke as if he used to drive the number 22 bus... but what a talk!! I don't understand how anyone can talk so calmly about how he p***ed off the Russians and that they were trying to kill him. Terry Pappas was not like anyone I have ever seen before and not like anyone I have ever met. If you were in an out of control plane heading for the ground, imagine how good it would be to see him take over the controls?

I feel that I have to ask everyone if they all agree that it was good to see Rusty relax a little during Sunday's talk? He really started to enjoy himself I think, so much so that he overran his time but he didn't seem to care. He really was quite funny too.

Funniest Rusty moment:
Crowd member: "What was space sickness like?"
Rusty: "Barf."

Now then, time to talk about the mere mortals of the weekend:

Firstly, my girlfriend and I had the pleasure of spending the weekend with my friend Colin. Thanks Colin for making the weekend even more fantastic with the odd insightful comment here and many a hilarious comment there.

Dave Bryant — He called me Lee Evans, I called him Brian May and the laughs just went from there!! My girlfriend and I just loved listening to his stories and could have listened all day. A bright, bright man (AND a talented guitarist. Wow!). At this point I feel I should apologise to his lovely wife for taking up so much of his time.

Also lovely to meet Peter the crazy Dutchman/lawyer. I still can't forget his face when confronted with a straight Vodka... or his face after drinking it!!

Shane, what a pleasure it was to meet you and your girlfriend. We all enjoyed your company on Saturday night! You stated on here that you think you're punching above your weight? Well now you know that I am too! Aren't we lucky?

Also good to meet Chris (I haven't forgotten that I should have given you the brilliant David Woods Radio Four documentary 'Walking on The Moon'. I will get that to you) and good to see big Rick enjoying himself.

Rick, when I seen you at Mr Cernan's table, you have no idea how tempted I was to whisper to you "Does Ken know you're here?", tongue firmly in cheek, of course! I think it was the sight of the big lad next to you that stopped me.

Another person it was great to meet was Dave at Gene Cernan's table. He really made my girlfriend and I laugh so much. I also really loved his stories (You know the ones, Dave!)

Finally, it was great to meet the only Scott Bakula lookalike I've met who also also acts like David Walliams. What a great guy he was and if being labelled Lee Evans wasn't bad enough, being sat next to that handsome sod didn't help matters.

One final thing I'd like to ask- Robert, exactly which part of England are you from?

If I've missed anyone out then I apologise but I can only put it down to my brain still being frazzled by what happened last weekend.

One of the very best weekends of my life (and I've had a few!).

Paul23
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Posts: 784
From: South East, UK
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 09-25-2013 05:40 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul23   Click Here to Email Paul23     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I hope I'm not talking out of turn here, I don't normally like reporting conversations on the interweb but Dave did mention on Saturday that he reckoned next year could be even better, if so I think we are all in for a treat!

Rick Mulheirn
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posted 09-25-2013 06:48 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Buel:
Rick, when I seen you at Mr Cernan's table, you have no idea how tempted I was to whisper to you "Does Ken know you're here?", tongue firmly in cheek, of course! I think it was the sight of the big lad next to you that stopped me.
I was given a Papal dispensation to attend!

Tykeanaut
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Posts: 1697
From: Worcestershire, England, UK.
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 09-25-2013 07:00 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Tykeanaut   Click Here to Email Tykeanaut     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Shane, excellent post. Let me know if you want anything published in our parochial bi-monthly?

Apologies, completely forgot to introduce you and Demi to Niki my long-suffering wife after I found her!

Rick Mulheirn
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From: England
Registered: Feb 2001

posted 09-25-2013 08:45 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for Rick Mulheirn   Click Here to Email Rick Mulheirn     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
My apologies to Shane — amongst others — for not stopping for a chat.

Shane, I spotted you several times at the crease (batting well above your average) with Demi, and intended introducing myself.

I don't know quite how it happened but despite staying over night the time just flew by; I was so wrapped up in the lectures the signings (for myself and others), the trade tables, the dinner and the bar.... I did not get to meet everybody I had hoped to.

AstroAutos
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Posts: 750
From: Co. Monaghan, Ireland
Registered: Mar 2009

posted 09-25-2013 10:41 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for AstroAutos   Click Here to Email AstroAutos     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Craig - you and Danielle are a lovely couple, was a pleasure to meet you guys and I'm sure it won't be the last late-night vodka session! I just emailed you the photos of us that were on our camera. From reading your post one regret I have is not going to meet Terry Pappas, seems like an incredible guy...

Chris - Was great to meet you again and of course I would love any articles that I write to be published in the Midlands Spaceflight Society magazine! We just said a quick hello to Niki while you guys were walking past on Sunday (I think), but it's just more reason to meet up in March for a drink!

Rick - I'm as guilty as you, we were there all weekend but didn't manage to get over to say hello. March is already penciled into my diary and it will be nice to finally get a picture with someone who doesn't make my height stand out quite as much!

David Bryant
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From: Norfolk UK
Registered: Feb 2005

posted 09-25-2013 11:03 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for David Bryant   Click Here to Email David Bryant     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
On reflection: one of the all-time great Autographica weekends...

So many lovely people who make the whole thing so much fun: 'Buel' and his gorgeous partner, Dave and Paul (the Heathrow Crew!) Dave Shayler and team, Richard (our new 'competitor'!) Paul (Humungous!), Jason and Thomas, Howard, Brian and Margaret, Mick F, Garry (Baldyman!)

When I retire (two more shows?) I'll miss you guys the MOST!

Mind you: I could've done without a certain Aussie actor asking me if I was gay all weekend! LOL!

David Bryant
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Posts: 919
From: Norfolk UK
Registered: Feb 2005

posted 09-25-2013 11:05 AM     Click Here to See the Profile for David Bryant   Click Here to Email David Bryant     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by Rick Mulheirn:
I was given a Papal dispensation to attend!
More of a PAYPAL dispensation, surely! LOL!

Buel
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Posts: 128
From: UK
Registered: Mar 2012

posted 09-25-2013 04:09 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Buel   Click Here to Email Buel     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
I'm STILL dreaming about that weekend!!!

Paul23
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Posts: 784
From: South East, UK
Registered: Apr 2008

posted 09-25-2013 04:55 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Paul23   Click Here to Email Paul23     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
quote:
Originally posted by David Bryant:
On reflection: one of the all-time great Autographica weekends...
The more I look back on the weekend the more I agree with this. Usually I come back from the show regretting not getting a particular item signed or pulling a stupid face in a photo but with this event my only regret is I didn't spend the whole weekend there rather than just the one day.

Struggling to think of an Autographica without the Space Station being there though, would seem to leave a sizable hole in the event!


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